Granada is without any doubt one of the most beautiful cities in Spain. It has the perfect contrast of the coast, the mountains and a magical historic city. If you’re looking for the perfect weekend away, you shouldn’t look any further. Granada is such a great option. With this Ultimate City Break in Granada itinerary, you can experience the best of this city in just a weekend. From the stunning architecture of the Alhambra to the taste of the best Spanish cuisine. All of this will make your trip to Granada an unforgettable weekend away.
DAY 1 MORNING: EXPLORE THE ALHAMBRA
The Alhambra is the main tourist attraction in the city. When you see it, you’ll know why. It is a palace and fortress complex, so it will take you a couple of hours to visit it all. It was begun in the 13th century and now it’s one of the most famous monuments of Islamic architecture. The complex opens at 8:30 a.m so we recommend that you start your day here. Furthermore, you can book tickets through this link to avoid having to queue for tickets or it selling out quick. Moreover, you could also book a private guided visit to enjoy it at your own path.
Once inside the complex, your ultimate city break in granada will become worth it. Spend the morning exploring the intricate architecture and beautiful gardens. From the Palacio Carlos V (Charles V Palace) to the Nasrid Palaces and the Alcazaba, they will surely impress you. The Palacio Carlos V now holds the Alhambra Museum and the Fine Arts Museums, which could be part of the itinerary if you have some spare time. Moreover, the Nasrid Palaces are composed by 3 gorgeous and refined palaces which an amazing delicate architecture. In the afternoon, head to the Generalife Gardens, where you can wander through this greenery scene. It used to be the leisure villa of the sultans, so you can imagine how beautiful these gardens can be. After your visit, you can enjoy some Spanish food (tapas) to fuel up and continue your day!
DAY 1 EVENING: RELAXING TIME AND TAPAS
You can leave the Alhambra and walk down through Cuesta Empedrada up to Plaza Nueva. Then, in the evening, you can either have a relaxing time or go out for some more fun! You can visit some Ancient Baths (Hammam) and relax yourself. After this, you can continue your ultimate city break in Granada by visiting some of the old town. After all, you can top your day with an amazing dinner in the city. We recommed trying the Remojon Granaíno (typical summer salad made of olives, oranges and codfish) or taste some Iberian Ham or Montefrieño Cheese. If you want to enjoy the best food while visiting Granada, you could also book a tapas tour in Granada – they are so much fun! Here are some insider’s ideas on what to do if you want to have a fun night out in Granada.
DAY 2 MORNING: DISCOVER THE ALBAICIN NEIGHBORHOOD
On your second day, you could head to the Alcaicería handicraft shops and then visit the Madrasa of Granada, which is part now of the University of Granada. After this, your day continues in the well-known AlbaIcin neighborhood. This area is known for its narrow streets, the white-washed buildings and the stunning views of the Alhambra. You can stop by the Mirador de San Nicolas (viewpoint) to have a panoramic view of the city and the Sierra Nevada Mountains. For lunch, you can head to Plaza del Aliatar (and try some spanish-style snails) or to Plaza de San Nicolás for some more tapas. The must-stops in the Albaicin neighborhood are the Iglesia del Salvador (Church), Mezquita Nueva (Mosque) and Calle de las Teterías.
DAY 2 EVENING: SACROMONTE AND FLAMENCO
Sacromonte is the highest part of the city. It is known for its caves and flamenco music. Here’s an interesting fact: it is said that the relics of Saint Cecilio were found here, and that’s why it was named “Sacromonte” (sacred mountain). One of the must-stops in your ultimate city break in Granada is the Sacromonte Abbey. It is a place in Granada where culture, history and traditions come together. If you buy tickets for the Abbey, you’ll get to see historic books and Arabic manuscripts of extraordinary value. Moreover, there’s a legend saying that in here there are two stones: a black one and a white one. The legend says that the black stone can get single people married, whereas whoever touches the white stone will get rid of their partner through their death.
Furthermore, your afternoon in Sacromonte is not finished yet. You can have walk up the Camino del Sacromonte, which will take you through the cave-houses in this neighborhood. Then, you can stop at the Sacromonte Caves Museum to deep into the history and culture of the Sacromonte Neighborhood. It also offers amazing views of the Alhambra and the Darro Valley. In this museum, you can learn about the origin of flamenco and see how people lived at the start. To finish your visit, you must book a flamenco show at night. Here you can taste some more Spanish tapas and wine while enjoying flamenco in the place it was first originated.
DAY 3 MORNING: UNVEIL THE MONASTERIES
What to do on your final day of your ultimate city break in Granada will depend on when you’re leaving. If you got the whole day, we recommend visiting the monasteries in Granada. If not, you may want to just visit the main monuments in the city centre. To visit the monasteries, we recommend booking a guided tour so you don’t have to rely on public transportation. You can visit the Cartuja Monastery (the ticket costs 5€). This monastery used to be a Roman cemetery. Inside, you must see the Refectory and the Church, both of the which have an amazing architecture. After this, you could also visit the San Jerónimo Monastery, which was the first one built after the Christian conquest of Granada. The entrance ticket is 4€.
DAY 3 EVENING: CITY CENTRE MONUMENTS
After enjoying some more Spanish cuisine at lunch, it’s time to see the last monuments in the city before your departure. You can start the end of your ultimate city break in Granada by seeing the Puerta Real (known as the Times Square of Granada) or Plaza del Carmen. From here, you can walk up to Plaza Bib-Rambla, one of the most ancients and transformed spots in the city. After all, a city break in Spain wouldn’t be a city break without a stop in a Cathedral. A must-stop is the Cathedral of Granada, which has a Renaissance style. You can buy an entrance ticket for 5€. Lastly, next to the Cathedral, you can find the Capilla Real (Royal Chapel of Granada), the burial place of the Spanish Catholic Monarchs.
If you still have some more time for dinner, you should try the Plato Alpujarreño (fried egg, potatoes, chorizo and peppers or Habas con jamón (beans with iberian ham). Eventually, if you prefer some sweet, you must try the famous Piononos of Granada (juicy spongy cake with cream) or the Cuajada de Carnaval. If you want some ideas of where to eat, you can check out this post about the best lunch spots in Granada.
We hope that this guide is useful to plan your next ultimate city break in Granada. We are sure that this city will not disappoint you and that you’ll have the best time. In addition, Iif you’re coming from other cities in Andalucía but want to spend the weekend here, we recommend booking a private transfer to have a hassle-free start. Here you can also check where to stay in case you haven’t booked your accommodation yet. Moreover, you can obviously visit the city on your own by following some itineraries. However, if you want to make the most out of your visit, you should book a guided tour that takes you to the main spots and explains the history behind. We hope to see you soon in Granada. Do not hesitate to contact us if you need any help for your city break!